Rob's Rambling

Julius Malema is right #uniteSA

Posted by Rob April 8, 2010, under Personal, South Africa | 6 Comments

 

As much as it pains me to say it and to move off the #ignorejulius campaign, I have to admit that he's kinda right. (and yes, I expect some flak for this opinion)

 

Not, perhaps, in the way he says things or the manner in which he'd prefer to fix the problems he sees but fundamentally right. For 15 years, South Africa has been pretending that everything is wonderful, that the rainbow nation is complete in its amalgam of people. The facade has started to crack a little of late - with the Death of Eugene Terre'blanche, white vs black at the Ventersdorp courthouse and a spate of small skirmishes between groups of black and white folk.

 

And more than ever, the rich and poor of South Africa are faced with a seemingly insurmountable chasm. I went for a drive today through some of the poorer parts of East London and really let it all sink in. The abject poverty visible within even a small area is incredible.

 

Now, I said that Julius was right and I'm absolutely sticking to that. But the problem with our friend Julius is that he invariably takes things too far or not far enough. In this case he's done both. He seems to have gone out of his way to alienate people who aren't in the majority of SA (read: white, coloured, indian... well, not black) but he's also pushing for the redistribution of land into the hands of those that do need it.

 

When I say he's right - I mean specifically that we're not an equal society, not in the least. There's so much glaring disparity between white and black in this country that it's impossible to not give him some credit. Anything else is simple avoidance. And yet when I hear him speak I can't help but feel waves of trepidation that this man may one day be afforded the highest authority in the land. But as much as he can be an agent for doom and gloom, the rest of South Africa fills me with such hope and joy that it fills me to bursting.

 

We have so much potential, so much raw energy in our country that not even a "race war" should be able to stop us.

 

It's time South Africa admits that the democracy we've been punting for the last decade and a half isn't quite the reality that exists. It's also time for white people en masse to admit that perhaps they're not as badly off as they've been making out and that the majority of South Africa hasn't benefitted nearly enough to redress the years of crushing and stomping under the Apartheid boot.

 

Is this a bad thing? No, not really. If anything, I think it's about time that all the ugliness came out into the open and we began to properly fix the problems rather than pasting a layer of TRC over the yawning cracks.

 

The only way we can make our country work is with a united vision and united effort. Anything else is just lipservice and so much wallpaper. 

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Currently have 6 Comments

  1. I agree, there has been a blog post going around in my head about the fact that as a white South African I benefited while others suffered under apartheid and therefore I owe something back. I did not have to agree with what the previous government did and I was just a child, but I think I have an extra duty to fight to improve the lives of those who did not benefit

  2. The problem often is we have misplaced guilt - we are not guilty of the injustices of the past but surely it is our human duty to do something to try and address the remaining problems?

  3. yes no point is guilt it does nothing - we need action

  4. Right when he says what, exactly?
    Sure, there's a huge dispartity between rich and poor. I don't think anyone disputes or ignores that. I don't think cracks have been papered over. They are there for everyone to see, and they are (to continue the analogy) being polyfilled, bit by bit.
    How you can say that what JM is doing is correct mystifies me. As far as I can see, he is the one widening the cracks with his singing and obsession with bringing everything down to a racial denominator.

  5. I didn't say he's right in the way he does things (actually, I said he's probably not right in the way he says things or wants things done) but that he's right about the way things are.
     
    If nothing else, Julius probably calls things like he sees them. I don't believe we're a breath away from civil war but I also don't believe we're a happy rainbow nation.
     
    I do wish he'd stop singing the songs though - that would probably help a great deal.

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